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APPALLING ACCUSATIONS: Kings Langley schoolteacher denies sex offence allegations

 Published on: 19th August 2021   |   By: Court Reporter   |   Category: Uncategorized

A former teacher at a secondary school in Kings Langley has denied allegations that he committed sex offences on two male pupils at the school.

But a jury at St Albans Crown Court heard today (Thursday, August 19) that former art craft and design teacher, Anthony Shenton, who is now 82, has admitted sex offences on a number of other boys from the school between 1968 and 1984.

Mr Shenton is on trial, having pleading not guilty to sex offences on the two boys who were pupils at Langleybury School in Kings Langley, Herts, in the 1970s and 1980s.

He is alleged to have abused the boys at his home where they had gone after lessons at the school which has since closed down.

Mr Shenton, who lives in Aldenham, is alleged to have fondled the two boys and committed sex acts on them.

He pleads not guilty to five offences of indecent assault on a male person, buggery and indecency with a child.

The complainants, who are now adults, gave evidence to the court earlier this week about what they say the teacher did to them.

The prosecution say the seven counts the defendant has pleaded not guilty to, reflect his grooming of the two boys.

The complainant said to have been sexually abused by the teacher in the 1980s, told the jury earlier he had visited Mr Shenton at his flat at the school on numerous occasions and offences began when he found himself sitting on the teacher’s lap and his back and buttocks were being rubbed.

He said he thought he was around 13 or 14 at the time and after that incident activities between them progressed to mutually fondling each other as they lay naked together.

The second complainant, who is now aged 60, said he had attended the school in the 1970s and he said the defendant ran an after-school canoe club.

He described him as being “different” from the other teachers and seemed younger and “more interesting.

The man said he too got involved with the canoe club and also visited the teacher at his home.

At first, he said, nothing happened, but he said he remembered how during one visit he ended up sitting on Mr Shenton’s lap as he spoke about canoeing and mountaineering.

He went on: “He started touching.”

The man said in the visits that followed they would end up kissing, undressing and oral sexual took place.

He said the defendant also carried out an act of anal sex on him.

The man said on one occasion at the school, the defendant had kissed and hugged him when they were alone in a store room.

He said on another occasion, when he and some boys had gone away with the teacher for a trip to Austria, Mr Shenton had “assaulted” him in an Alpine ski lodge.

In court today, the crown closed its case after prosecutor Isabel Delamere had read out a number of “admissions” that had been agreed with the defence.

The jury heard that Shenton has pleaded guilty to a number of sexual offences with boys aged between 12 and 14 while he was a teacher at the school.

The offences he has admitted involve seven boys, which took place when he was living in a flat in Abbots Langley in the 1970s, and later when he had “grace and favour” accommodation in an old stable block at the school.

Leicestershire-born Mr Shenton then went into the witness box to tell the jury he had begun working as a teacher at Langleybury School in 1966.

He said he remembered the youngster said to have been concerned in the 1980s offences as a pupil at the school, but he said he had never been inside his flat.

He said he could only remember one time when the boy had turned up at the school one Saturday morning as he was putting kayaks on a trailer ready for a school trip the next day to Wales.

He said on that occasion the boy had helped him load the kayaks and together they had taken his (Shenton’s) dog for a walk before he drove the youngster home.

Mr Shelton said he remembered the youngster had used a toilet situated in the building where he flat was, but never went inside.

His barrister Alisdair Smith asked him “On that occasion did you touch him sexually?”

He replied: “No.”

Mr Smith then asked: “On any other occasion did you touch him sexually?”

“No,” he answered.

He then told the jury he had no recollection of the second complainant concerned in the 1970s alleged offences.

Mr Shenton said he had no memory of the boy coming to his flat or touching him sexually.

Asked if he had “touched” the boy during a trip to Austria in 1976, he replied: “No” and he denied ever committing an act of buggery with him.

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